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Shannon not worried about DL depth

Even though I consider it the biggest concern on the team heading into next Thursday's season opener, UM coach Randy Shannon told reporters Thursday he's not worried about his team's depth on the defensive line.

And it seemed like he meant even if projected starting defensive ends Allen Bailey and Eric Moncur (whom Shannon said are supposed to see doctors Thursday) aren't ready for Charleston Southern. Shannon told reporters both need to be practicing by Sunday to play in the first game.

"Anytime you have a rotation on the defensive line you're OK," Shannon said. "But anytime you don't have a rotation that's when you'll have problems. We have five guys working in at defensive tackle and another five guys at defensive end, so nobody is really going to have play more than 35 snaps a game. That's pretty good."

Part of the reason Shannon might be feeling better is the emergence of freshman Marcus Robinson, who has continued to impress coaches as a rush end. "Right now he's with second team," Shannon told reporters. "He's running, making plays and we're excited about him."

> Shannon said sophomore Leonard Hankerson's big day Tuesday (he caught three touchdown passes in the final scrimmage) was encouraging, so much so that coaches now have moved him from the inside slot position back to the outside.

> Shannon said kicker Matt Bosher missed a 54-yard field goal in Tuesday's scrimmage, but came back and hit one from "40-something." He said freshman Jake Wieclaw also made one from 40-yards. Shannon once again said if the season started today Bosher would handle all of the kicking duties.

Special teams coach Joe Pannunzio said he is comfortable with Bosher attempting field goals from as far out as 55 yards. "But I like extra points a lot better than 40 yard field goals," Pannunzio said. "But he has the ability to make them from that far."

"Matt has the strongest leg. Sometimes he's the most accurate," Pannunzio said. "He hit a little slump about two weeks ago. Part of that is probably me. We hadn't settled on a short snapper for extra points and field goals and now we've settled on that it's going to be Jake Byrne. Everybody talks about the kickers on the field goal, but that snapper is awfully important. I think he's lucky in that his holder is the same guy from high school Matt Perrelli."

Pannunzio said he believes Bosher has a strong enough leg and is athletic enough to handle all three duties, but admits he was worried last year Bosher would struggle with the punting. "If you look at him last year, after three or four games everyone thought it was going to be a nightmare," Pannunzio said. "But as the year progressed, he got better and it was just like if you or me and went out there and started something new we'd make a lot of mistakes early. As he became more comfortable, I thought he became pretty good. I thought when we played Virginia Tech, he held them down pretty good. Eddie Royal was as good a punt returner as I've played against and he did a great job holding him down."

> Pannunzio said what has been holding back Wieclaw, whom he insists is healthy after coming back from a broken foot, has been getting used to kicking off the ground and not a tee.

> As far as the return game is concerned, Pannunzio made it seem like Ryan Hill is a lock to start opposite either Shawnbrey McNeal or Brandon Harris. Bruce Johnson is also possibility. Even though Pannunzio said he still likes Aldarius Johnson back there, Shannon told reporters Johnson has been taken of kick returns.

> Graig Cooper is the front runner for punt returns. "And then Travis Benjamin, who is like lightning," Pannunzio said. "Thearon Collier, Chavez Grant is sure-handed and he's been back there before. That's kind of it."

> Former UM kicker Daren Daly has turned up at the University of Central Florida. Daly kicked for UM and FSU and is probably the only guy in the state's history to play for three different I-A schools.


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Thanks, Manny. Good work. One week left.


Thanks for the update, Manny. One week till HURRICANE SEASON !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Hey Manny, when is you're next Q and A?

Very encouraging about the defensive line. I really hope that Wieclaw gets comfortable enough to start placekicking early in the year. I hate one guy handling all of those responsibilities. And the only coach on the coaching staff that I have zero faith in is Pannunzio (whom Coker hired and subsequently screamed at in public on the sidelines of their first game). Special teams has been pretty flat under him, but I guess everything has been flat lately. Maybe I'm just bitter about Coker holdovers.

I'm psyched about this team and this season. Can't wait to watch next Thursday. Only place I can get ESPN360 is in my office at work, so I'll be bringing a sixer and a large pizza there late and having an exclusive office party (Green and Orange only) up here in Chitown.


Good stuff Manny. I'm so tired of reading all the negativity. Let's kick it off for real already, take our lumps in ’08 and continue to build for the ’09 season. The young talent is doing their part. Time for us Canes fans to get in game shape; show support at the games (Dolphin Stadium) and exercise some patience. GO CANES...

Good stuff Manny. I'm so tired of reading all the negativity. Let's kick it off for real already, take our lumps in ’08 and continue to build for the ’09 season. The young talent is doing their part. Time for us Canes fans to get in game shape; show support at the games (Dolphin Stadium) and exercise some patience. GO CANES...


I've never liked Pannunzio either. Don't know why he wasn't let go with Mosley and Walton after last year. The fact that he is a Coker holdover makes me dislike him even more. If he doesn't get the job done this year with the young talent on special teams, i think it's safe to say he'll be unemployed.

Why not have Shawnbrey or Lee Chambers take the punts. You're gonna get Graig Cooper killed...he's a major part of the offense. It would also mean more touches for Shawnbrey and Chambers.


I'm with you on Pannunzio...our special teams were horrible last year. We can't even get Wieclaw ready for the season....what the hell is that all about??? We've got all types of injuries at the more demanding positions who will be ready to go...

We should be putting shots on kick returners with the speed on this team. We should call for Pannunzio's head if that's not happening. It doesn't matter if he can recruit or not.

so this is how them folks rootin for that other school up north really feel...

Wednesday, July 23, 2008
Re: The Hurricanes

July 22, 2008

Mr. Urban Meyer
Head Football Coach
The University of Florida
C/O University Athletic Association

P.O. Box 14485

Gainesville, FL 32604

Dear Coach Meyer,

I am writing you this note so that you can consider something as you prepare for the 2008 season. As you know, Florida has many great rivalries including the ones against fellow SEC schools and, of course, Florida State. The Gators have had significant success against many of these schools, especially recently. One school we haven’t had any success against in more than 20 years is the University of Miami.

The second Gator game I ever attended, back when I was a UF freshman in 1987, was against Miami, in the Orange Bowl. We lost. Then UF didn’t play Miami again until January of 2001, in a bowl game. We lost that one as well. The Gators, coached by your predecessor, played Miami in 2002. Our former coach later recounted to an A.P. reporter named Eddie Pells that as he watched the Hurricanes come out of the tunnel and he told the person next to him “Fellas, in three years, we're going to look like that.” Needless to say with a coach worrying about the 2005 Gators, the 2002 Gators lost that home game in embarrassing fashion. The following year in the Orange Bowl, the Gators squandered a 23-point lead with 21 minutes to play. We lost by five. And finally, the last Gator game before you took over as Head Coach was a 27-10 Peach Bowl pasting at the hands of Miami.

You can’t underestimate how important the September 6th game against Miami is to the tens of thousands of Florida alumni and students from the south Florida area. Miami is rightly recognized as being one of the top football programs of the last quarter century and their fans never let us forget it. Additionally, there’s been bad blood between these two schools ever since the infamous “Gator Flop” of 1971. If you’re not familiar with this chapter of gator lore, I urge you to find out about it.

The last time the Gators beat the Hurricanes in football was on September 7th 1985. On September 7th 2008, I want to wake up in Gainesville with a terrible winner’s hangover.

Coach, in closing, I’d just like to urge you, your coaches and the players to give Miami the respect they deserve as an opponent that can ruin our season. Though their program has fallen on tough times recently, Miami is trying to reassert itself under coach Shannon and this will be Miami’s biggest game the year. Coach Shannon played on those Hurricanes teams that beat our Gators in 1986 and 1987 but he also played on the team that lost to UF in 1985. There’s no doubt he wants this game badly. Hopefully this letter will add a sense of urgency to the preparation for this game. Every game counts, of course, but in some games there’s more on the line than a simple W or L. Go Gators!


Henry Gomez

Posted by Henry Louis Gomez at 10:35 AM

Labels: Da U, Gator Flop, History, Randy Shannon, Rivalries

They just don't want to beat us...they want to be us.

Wow, you guys are talking about special teams and who will be scUM's placekicker? LOL! You guys are in for a long season!

Wow, you guys are talking about special teams and who will be scUM's placekicker? LOL! You guys are in for a long season!


Maybe it's a sign of how confident we are. :-) Actually until Florida actually beats Miami I wouldn't brag too much. We understand it coming from FSU fans who most of us respect.

You guys should win this year. You'll be heavily favored and your at home. Pressure is on you guys. If we win great, if we lose it most of us are expecting it.

Enjoy and good luck on Sept 6. My guess is it's not going to be as easy as you think.

Real canesrule here, that Pannunzio guy is going to wreck our limping special teams. Every single person on the SS blog hates this guy. Our kicking game will use Bosher for all kicking. That’s what coaches do when they don’t trust any of the other kickers. Our special teams will be dreadful again in 08. I’ve been yapping all summer about what a stud Cooper would be at running back. Turns out he’s returning punts instead. No team with a feature tail-back uses them to RETURN PUNTS. Guess he isn’t all he’s advertised as. We were expecting things from Moncur too but he’s just holding a clipboard. I’ll be wearing my fun Tim Tebow underoos during that beatdown. Are there more than 10 career touchdowns amongst our entire starting offense? Has any offensive player shown that he can produce at the D-1 level on this team in 08? We don’t have one proven guy. Florida is going to cover the spread (17-1/2, expect points to move toward UM) before halftime. We’re gonna get crushed.

It is refreshing to see a thoughtful, articulate, and respectful letter like that of Mr Gomez. Perhaps some Canes fans could emulate his style. Good teams respect everyone and fear none. Why trash the special teams coach before the season begins? The best teams put their best players on ST. Unfortunately, UM has had truly wretched ST performances in recent years and that has been a significant factor in the overall poor performance.


Just remember 1 thing

S illy
C oach
U rban
M yers

Go Canes Beat the S.C.U.M.


Gators most obnoxious in SEC

You guys know there are other games on the schedule besides Florida, right. UF is not a make or break game for us, it really means more to them. UF is not a rival for us. Competing in the ACC has to be the goal for this season. I'd put Virginia, Georgia Tech, UNC, and VT on the hit list before UF. These guys actually think we can't compete in the ACC.

I'd rather psychologically damage every team in the ACC by whipping them with freshman than beating UF.

If we lose at UF we'll get them back at some point before 2013. They can't hide till then, we'll be in some bowl soon.

I can't wait for Calvin to ask "the so called" ,Dan Stein, a question....LMFAO.

...so good...makes you want to slap your Momma..

What??? Man I live around Chattanooga, Tn....and I am a season ticket holder (4) on the 50. Get off your tail, and go to the games.....lol. Treat me nice, and I may save a ticket for you....GO CANES GO!!!!!


maybe he's in Shul....It is Fri. night..

wat up with our sprinters?

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